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Galway in Days Gone By

Galway In Days Gone By

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Rail workers at Galway Railway Station in 1955 (from left): Johnny Foy, Mervue; John Mulkerrins, Old Clybaun Road; and Dennis Lally Henry Street.

1918

Conscription menace

Speaking at St. Ignatius Church, Galway, on Sunday, the Rev. Father Cahill, S.J., alluded to the appalling menace of conscription with which the country was faced.

The teaching of Catholic theology was that an oppressed, unjustifiable law could be resisted. The people affected by the Conscription Bill came under three heads. There were first those who came within the prescribed age limits. In the second place there was the executive charged with the enforcement of the Act – judges, magistrates, police and military.

To those, Father Cahill pointed out that to try and enforce an unjust measure of legislation would be co-operating in an act of injustice and tyranny, and to do that would be immoral and sinful.

Under the third head came women and children, and people over the prescribed age. By the law of charity, even those were bound to resist the Act, just as a man who saw his neighbour’s house on fire, or saw him attacked by a murderer, or his goods being stolen would be expected in charity to help him.

Seven churches march

“Denying the right of the British Government to enforce compulsory service in this country, we pledge ourselves solemnly to one another to resist Conscription by the most effective means at our disposal.”

This solemn pledge was taken at Eyre-square, Galway, on Sunday by a crowd of over five thousand people. It was one of the largest gatherings seen in the Square since the days of Parnell.

After eleven o’clock Mass, the congregations of the seven city churches marched in a processional order, headed by their priests and the crowd, with upraised hands and bared heads, solemnly took the pledge to resist conscription.

Very Rev. A.J. Considine, Adm, V.F., who wore his surplice, said he appeared in the garb because the gathering was a religious one, and he continued “to convey to you a message from your Bishop and others”.

“It is my belief that conscription is likely to work out under the authorities of the British Army in this country as a grave, physical and moral menace to the small, healthy remnant of the Irish in Ireland and, therefore, to the healthy perpetuation of the Irish nation.

“For this reason and for many others as well, I approve of and bless resistance to its enforcement by every means within the law of God.” (Cheers).

1943

 Patients on floors

To relieve the demand on bed accommodation in the Galway Central Hospital and to avoid the necessity of compelling patients to sleep on hospital floors, some disused buildings such as the old workhouse in Portumna should be equipped and utilised as a hospital until a new County Hospital could be built.

This proposal, placed before the Galway County Council at Saturday’s meeting by Mr. R.M. Burke, was described by some other councillors as “propaganda”.

Ald. Miss Ashe said that the county had got rid of the workhouses and of the people who had forced the workhouses on them and they did not want to see the poorhouses utilised again for any purpose.

Mr. Burke said that he proposed to the County Manager some time ago that as materials were not available to permit building work at the Central Hospital, some existing building should be utilised. He had been informed that the old workhouse in Portumna could be fitted for temporary use as a hospital.

If that were done, patients from that part of the county would be spared a long journey to hospital and, what was more important, patients could have beds instead of being obliged to sleep on the floor.

Mr. S. O’Kelly supported the case and said that it was terrible that patients should be left lying on the floors in the general hospital in Galway because of insufficient bed accommodation.

Mr. H. O’Toole: I walked through two wards this morning and I saw beds empty. This is all false propaganda.

Mr. W. Dunne said that he would like to see the new hospital in operation, but did the people who were making proposals now realise that essential materials were unprocurable? The price of timber had gone up by 400 per cent and steel and iron were unprocurable. What was the use of talking hog-wash?

He described the proposals made at the meeting as pure propaganda and added that he did not care who liked that description.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

Connacht Tribune

Galway In Days Gone By

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Some of the attendance at the opening of the new school in Ballymacward on June 24, 1974.

1923

Gloom after war

The special correspondent of the “Independent”, who has been writing of the aftermath of civil war in the West, notes that a feeling of apathy, due to the uncertainty of events, exists amongst the sorely-tried people of Connemara; that politics are referred to only with disgust and that not more than fifty per cent. of the people would vote at a general election; that poverty and unemployment are rife, and there is a growing tendency towards emigration; and that there are bitter complaints of the huge impost of rates and taxes.

It is only too true that there is enough of material for the pessimist to brood over, and that a feeling of gloom permeates country towns. But it is a poor tribute to patriotism that has survived such horrors to encourage this gloom.

It is the duty of all of us to get this pessimism out of the national body and to rid ourselves of the notion that we have not enough Christianity and moral sense left to restore our people to cheerful and ordered progress and industry.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

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Galway in Days Gone By

Galway In Days Gone By

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Nurses on strike on May 10, 1980, protesting a sub-standard pay offer. Around 700 nurses took part in the protest, hitting services at Gawlay Regional Hospital where only emergency cases were being admitted.

1923

Peace negotiations

As we go to press, An Dáil is discussing the Peace negotiations between the Government and Mr. de Valera. It was announced on Wednesday for the first time that such negotiations were begun following Mr. de Valera’s “cease fire” proclamation of April 27, and that by the 30th of the month Senators Andrew Jameson and James Douglas were asked by him to discuss proposals.

They said it was for the Government to discuss; they could only confer. Into the ensuring conferences the Government declined to enter personally, but on May 3 the senators placed before Mr. de Valera the Cabinet’s terms, which were that future issues should be decided by the majority vote of the elected representatives of the people, and that as a corollary and a preliminary to the release of prisoners, all lethal weapons should be in the custody and control of the Executive Government.

Mr. de Valera relied to this on May 7 with a document in which he agreed to majority rule and control of arms, but added that arms should be stored in a suitable building in each province under armed Republican guard until after the elections in September, that the oath should not be made a test in the councils of the nation, and that all political prisoners should be released immediately on the signing of this agreement.

“You have brought back to us,” wrote President Cosgrave, “not an acceptance of our conditions, but a long and wordy document inviting debate where none is possible”.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

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Click HERE to download it for iPhone and iPad from Apple’s App Store, or HERE to get the Android Version from Google Play.

Or purchase the Digital Edition for PC, Mac or Laptop from Pagesuite  HERE.

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The Connacht Tribune Live app is the home of everything that is happening in Galway City and county. It’s completely FREE and features all the latest news, sport and information on what’s on in your area. Click HERE to download it for iPhone and iPad from Apple’s App Store, or HERE to get the Android Version from Google Play.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Galway in Days Gone By

Galway In Days Gone By

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Brendan Cunniffe from Oranmore and Robert Kelly, Tirellan Heights at the Galway County Fleadh in Tullycross, Connemara, on May 16, 1985.

1923

State of the parties

Speculation as to parties after the next Irish elections is exceedingly interesting, especially in view of the enlarged franchise.

In Dublin, the view appears to be held by a number of people that Labour will make a great bid for power.

Dublin, however, has a curiously insular habit of thought where matters that concern all Ireland and in which Ireland has a say are concerned. We hope this insularity will rapidly disappear under the new conditions.

The country as a whole is backing the Farmers’ Party, and has not the smallest doubt that it will be the strongest combination in the next Dáil, and that it will oust the purely political parties, the one because it has resorted to force, the other because it has been compelled to use force to supress force, and the Labour Party because Ireland feels that at the back of its policy lurks the danger of Communism.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

Connacht Tribune Digital Edition App

Download the Connacht Tribune Digital Edition App to access to Galway’s best-selling newspaper.

Click HERE to download it for iPhone and iPad from Apple’s App Store, or HERE to get the Android Version from Google Play.

Or purchase the Digital Edition for PC, Mac or Laptop from Pagesuite  HERE.

Get the Connacht Tribune Live app
The Connacht Tribune Live app is the home of everything that is happening in Galway City and county. It’s completely FREE and features all the latest news, sport and information on what’s on in your area. Click HERE to download it for iPhone and iPad from Apple’s App Store, or HERE to get the Android Version from Google Play.

 

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